It’s almost business as usual for TIFF this year. In-person events and red carpets return, but a healthy virtual program is also available for Canadian-based folk unable to travel, as the Covid-19 pandemic continues its onslaught.
TIFF co-head and artistic director Cameron Bailey has been with the festival for just over half its life, and says while some of the technology has changed in that time—“you’re no longer sitting in front of a TV monitor with VHS tapes… or waiting for 35mm prints to be spooled up and projected for you” —⁠the “basic process of falling in love with movies” has not.
It’s a challenge, Bailey says, to winnow down the films he falls in love with for the final TIFF lineup. And even then, it is an annual challenge for film lovers tight on time to narrow down their own selections. So, ahead of the fest, Bailey joined fellow TIFF programmers for a Twitter Spaces conversation with our editor in chief Gemma Gracewood, in order to help Letterboxd members make some watchlist decisions.
Joining Bailey were Thom Powers (TIFF Docs), Peter Kuplowsky (Midnight Madness), Robyn Citizen (senior programming manager), Diana Sanchez (Special Presentations, Spain, Latin America, Portugal and the Caribbean), Diana Cadavid (International Cinema) and Nataleah Hunter-Young (Africa, “the Middle East” and the Black Diaspora).
Edited highlights of the conversation follow, so have your watchlists close at hand.